Is That Guy Smiling At You Just Sexist?

sexist guy

Don’t be fooled by his smile! If he says something sexist, it’s still sexist! | Source: ShutterStock

Uh oh. Usually when a guy smiles at you, he likes you–which is awesome, right? Well, maybe not. A new study says that some guys smile because they’re sexist–and if they hide behind a grin, you’re less likely to realize it. Yikes!

Researchers studied men’s body language and its effect on women, and it turns out, even when a guy is acting like a total jackass, if he smiles, we’re pretty likely to do what he says. Here’s how they did it: They put a guy in a dominant role in the study, having him dole out instructions to the women. What the researchers found was that we were more likely to like a guy if he smiled–kind of “duh,” right?–but that we were also a lot more likely to be submissive to him if he smiled, too. We’d even like him if he said something that only a sexist pig would say. WTF?!

It’s because women are a lot more likely to rely on body language in communication than guys are. Body language expert Patti Wood explained, “Even if there’s dissonance between what’s been said and what his body is doing, women will look to the body. If they see a smile, then the interaction seems more friendly.” Basically? If he’s smiling while saying something nasty, we’ll assume he means it in a nice way. And that’s usually not the case at all. (Think of the guys who say gross stuff about your boobs, but act like they’re giving you a compliment instead of actually sexually harassing you.)

So how can we deal? If a guy smiles, great. But if he smiles and says something sexist, don’t be fooled by his pearly whites–believe what he says verbally. “Think through the verbal message before you respond,” Patti Wood advises. “If he says something sexist and you smile or shrink, it means he can get away with it.”

Not if we can help it!

Do you think guys use body language to get away with sexist behavior? How do you deal with a sexist guy? Have you ever dealt with sexism at school or work? Tell us in the comments!

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  • Angel

    This is the stupidest most judgmental thing I have ever read…..and Im a girl…. We give them shit for being judgmental and yet this is what “feminism has become”? More judgmentalism in every bit as stupid a way? For a smile??? Really?? Sometimes it really is just a damn joke. If it truly bothers you, simply say so. You robably arent his kind of girl and he isnt your kind of guy anyway if you have to. But otherwise, Joke back in the exact same way! Wanna know how to please a guy AND have him respect you? THATS ONE. Dish out his same shit right back in the same way, just do it with grace…cutely….but with fire. /:} THEN you tell who he is. He’ll either fall in love, or hate you. Either way, it’ll show who he really is. Unless….of course….you prefer the prissy little way of doing things… All weak and meek and fragile like not only guys, but these feminazi morons think you are. Be strong, girls. Truly strong. Put on your big girl pants and and show em that One, you are not the stupid stereotypes they think you are. And two, that you are able and will dish it out right back. And thats not to say that you dont do as they wish to please them if you wind up loving a guy. If a guy asks me if ill make him a sandwich, hell yeah, if he treats me good, Ill become a damn gourmet chef for that guy…. I dont care about stereotypes, thats a good woman. But if he TELLS me to go make him one or shows me I am not appreciated or makes me feel like I am being taken for granted…uh-uh… Thats where I stop that and have words with the guy. DONT be afraid to be a woman, girls. Just dont let them or ANYBODY view you or treat you any less than what you are.